SAN DIEGO-Locally based BioMed Realty Trust and Pasadena-based Alexandria Real Estate Equities both reported positive earnings in their latest quarterly financials despite the economic downturn–another sign that properties in the medical, biomedical and technology sectors are faring better in this economy than general office space. BioMed reported FFO of $35.8 million and 35 cents per share for the quarter compared with $35 million and 47 cents per share in the same quarter last year, while Alexandria reported FFO of $50.6 million and $1.13 per share compared to $46.3 million and $1.45 per share for last year’s comparable period.

BioMed’s chairman and CEO, Alan D. Gold, said that the company’s third-quarter performance illustrated that “The third quarter was positive for the life science industry,” pointing out that capital is available for the life sciences asset class from investors who are buying up stock offerings and participating in partnership transactions. “Our asset class continues to demonstrate the strength and stability that make the investment opportunities so appealing,” Gold said. Among other high points of the quarter, he noted that BioMed during the quarter arranged to offer and sell common stock over time that could generate $120 million in proceeds.

Further signs of the strength of the sector were reflected in BioMed’s revenues, which rose to $93 million for the quarter, up 15.1% from $80.8 million for the same period in 2008. At the same time, the company was active in development at a time when general office construction is at a virtual standstill. BioMed delivered a build-to-suit development of an approximately 230,000-square-foot corporate headquarters and research facility at the Landmark at Eastview campus in Tarrytown, NY for Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. during the quarter.

Also during the quarter, BioMed executed 11 leases totaling approximately 272,000 square feet, including eight new leases and three that were modified to extend their terms. In addition, the company repaid about $44 million of mortgage debt before its scheduled maturity and, after the end of the quarter, announced that the company has received commitments from lenders to increase the borrowing capacity on its unsecured line of credit by $65 million to an aggregate of $665 million.

At Alexandria, the Pasadena-based REIT reported that it executed a total of 29 leases for approximately 450,000 rentable square feet of space at 21 different properties during the quarter. Of the 450,000 square feet,approximately 207,000 consisted of new or renewal leases of previously leased space and approximately 243,000 consisted of developed, redeveloped or previously vacant space. Rental rates for these new or renewal leases were on average approximately 5.6% higher than rental rates for expiring leases, Alexandria reported–a contrast to the situation in the general office market, where lease rates are declining and landlords are offering ever-greater concessions to attract and retain tenants.

Among the deals closed during the quarter was a 15-year lease that Alexandria entered in July with Eli Lilly and Co. as the anchor tenant at the Alexandria Center for Life Science at East River Science Park in New York City. Lilly has leased approximately 91,000 rentable square feet, as well as an additional approximately 9,000 rentable square feet of core services space at the Alexandria Center, which will become the new research headquarters for ImClone Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lilly.

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